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Thread: 16 patch block

  1. #1
    Senior Member quiltykim's Avatar
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    16 patch block

    Hi! I am making 16 patch blocks and cant figure out if I should press the 4 row seams to one direction or use the twirly thing trick which opens up the seams a little more. Help!
    Last edited by quiltykim; 06-14-2012 at 06:41 PM.
    Happy Stitching! Kim

  2. #2
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    what block is it? squares or pinwheel type design. depends on block design how you need to press it. if you have seams coming together a lot, you might need to lessen those.

  3. #3
    Super Member GrannieAnnie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltykim View Post
    Hi! I am making 16 patch blocks and cant figure out if I should press the 4 row seams to one direction or use the twirly thing trick which opens up the seams a little more. Help!
    What I've been doing is treat each individual block as always-----iron to the dark. When I sew the 4 blocks together, I number my rows, then iron each uneven row to the left and even rows to the right. When I connect those rows, i don't end up with a lot of fabric in any seam.

    And remember that flat side of the meat tenderizer hammer helps flatten bumpy junctions.
    Bad Spellers of the World
    U N T I E

  4. #4
    Senior Member QuiltingCrazie's Avatar
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    I would iron all the seams open.
    *Rachel*

  5. #5
    Super Member burchquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltingCrazie View Post
    I would iron all the seams open.
    I always press all my seams open for this very reason (well, that's one of the reasons). You don't have to worry about which row goes which direction. Plus, the other reason is that the seams line up & match so nicely. And I think they lay flatter, too.
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    Senior Member rrhaigh's Avatar
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    Great suggestions! I always struggle with which way to iron and this will be so helpful. Thanks for sharing!
    Robin
    robinsquiltingroom.blogspot.com
    Southern California

  7. #7
    Senior Member quiltykim's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for your great suggestions! This 16 patch is 4 strips of 4 squares sewn together. For each strip of 4 colors they were either pressed up or down so when I sewed the 4 strips together they nest beautifully. Then I struggled with what to do. It was too late to press all seams open. I'll try that next quilt. You all are wonderful ! Thanks for the help!
    Happy Stitching! Kim

  8. #8
    Super Member JNCT14's Avatar
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    i always heard it was difficult to press open 1/4 seams, unlike fashion sewing. It makes sense though - I maytry it on my next project.

  9. #9
    Junior Member IraJane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltykim View Post
    Hi! I am making 16 patch blocks and cant figure out if I should press the 4 row seams to one direction or use the twirly thing trick which opens up the seams a little more. Help!
    I believe this is what you are asking about. It can also be done with pinwheel blocks. Learning how to "swirl" the intersection on blocks has reduced a lot of bulk at the seam intersections in my quilts. I think I first saw Billie Lauder doing this on Simply Quilts with Alex Anderson. Nice technique.

  10. #10
    Super Member jlm5419's Avatar
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    I like to press seams open, because it helps the block lay flat. Flatter blocks are easier to quilt over too. Pressing them to one side might make the quilt top itself a little stronger, but with machine sewing the difference is minimal.
    jlm5419-an Okie back in Oklahoma!
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  11. #11
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    Just finished piecing a Patches & Pinwheels quilt (well, the patches & pinwheels part, need to add borders). I twirled the seams on the 16 patch block and was pleased at how flat the block layed.
    Here's a link to the Bonnie Hunter pattern:
    http://quiltville.blogspot.com/2005/...pinwheels.html
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
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  12. #12
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    I also open the seams and iron on both sides.

  13. #13
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    your avatar picture is beautiful

  14. #14
    Junior Member IraJane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IraJane View Post
    I believe this is what you are asking about. It can also be done with pinwheel blocks. Learning how to "swirl" the intersection on blocks has reduced a lot of bulk at the seam intersections in my quilts. I think I first saw Billie Lauder doing this on Simply Quilts with Alex Anderson. Nice technique.
    The link didn't post, so I'll try again. http://cuttopieces.blogspot.com/2010...tch-block.html

  15. #15
    Senior Member emlee51's Avatar
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    I think I saw Eleanor Burns do the twisty thing with the intersections. I've been ironing my seams open when there are a lot of intersections...it does help the block lay flat. I just do a little more machine quilting to help secure the seams.

  16. #16
    Super Member Gladys's Avatar
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    Thank you so much for this information. I've always pressed seams open but thought that was not the real way to do it.

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